About this artwork

Thomas Annan’s prints of ‘The Old Closes and Streets of Glasgow’ had been published in his lifetime. His sons John and James Craig inherited the project and in 1900 produced a photogravure album with new images probably taken by John and, for the first time, a written text. According to the author, William Young: “The value of many of the plates embraced in this volume consists in their true presentation or suggestion of the seamy side of the city's life; in their depicting with absolute faithfulness, the gloom and squalor of the slums”.

Thomas Annan (1829-1887) founded his photographic studio in Glasgow in 1857. He was a specialist in architectural photography. Annan is best known for his 'Photographs of the Old Closes and Streets of Glasgow', published by the firm in 1878-9. Upon his death in 1887, his elder son, John, took over the business which became 'Annan and Sons' in 1888. Annan's younger son, James Craig, made his own name as a Pictorial photographer.